Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Cheerleaders Do It

That, roughly, is the defense being offered on behalf of Specialist Charles A. Graner: because cheerleaders all over America form pyramids at football games, it's perfectly fine for Specialist Graner to have forced naked and hooded Iraqi prisoners to do the same. It's also fine for him to have put naked prisoners on leashes, because that's what parents do with toddlers in airports. And that other stuff? The part where he took photos of people he was forcing to masturbate, or the photos of men with women's underwear on their heads, or the photos of semi-naked women? Those weren't abuse, either. That was all related to either controlling these prisoners or trying to get information out of them, you know, for the war on terra?, because they were all clearly guilty, guilty, bad, people.

Oh, wait. No they weren't.

And even if they were--none of this is okay. None of it.

Remember the stories that people like John McCain told about their treatment at the Hanoi Hilton? Those are the kinds of stories these Iraqi men and women can tell. McCain was, to his torturers, an enemy combatant--which in no way justifies the treatment he received. He was captured in their country, while he was in the process of trying to kill them. And the treatment he received is still not okay. (And, really, I have to apologize for the absolute inadequacy of that. "Not okay" doesn't even begin to scratch the surface.)

Just to make things even better, though, apparently this administration is considering bringing back the El Salvadoran Death Squad method for use in Iraq. I can't even comprehend all of this--Fred gives it a shot, too, but, really, words are inadequate.


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